Too bad the joke about reviewing a book about reviewing books is already taken, so those professional reviewers (at Publisher's Weekly, see above) really do have an edge over us amateurs. Gail Pool can thus rest assured that the market for her services, which she sees as endangered, will not be diluted to the point of total dilettantism, as I sensed from her slight animosity towards online reviewers who can afford to do it for free (I, in particular, take exception and offense to her statement that reviews spare in numbers are "probably" placed by the author's friends).
Aside from occasional pokes, however, it would be unfair to call Pool's plight a rant, since she does give good reasons for her concerns. It was about time someone who knows what they're doing spoke up about the caprices of the media machine that make and break careers, in this case inflationary, over-the-top, often misinformed book reviews, and, at the heart of it, the schemes that get an author reviewing space in the first place.
Fortunately, she does not leave it at that, but also offers viable guidelines and approaches that might very well serve the overall quality of literature, if not the book industry, which appears to be the underlying problem. Since, presumably, Pool is too experienced to bear any illusions that she is stronger than the system, the most valuable message of "Faint Praise" has universal appeal: be independent-minded if you can, do not take the path of least resistance by becoming just another particle of mass culture, and read, read, read--carefully.